The terms “England”, “Wales” and “Scotland” are used here for convenience as geographical indicators, since for most of the first millennium, they did not exist as such.

AD 37: Saint Aristibule sent to Britain from Tyre as first Bishop – recorded by Saint Dorotheus, Bishop of Tyre.

The four synods of Pisa 1409, Constance 1417, Sienna 1424 and Basle 1434, mention that “the Churches of France and Spain must yield in points of antiquity and precedence to that of Britain.

160-180: Bishop Saint Elvan and Saint Mydwyn are recorded in the Church in the West of England/Wales. Bishop Elvan died at Glastonbury circa AD195.

180c: Saint Dyfan becomes the first Christian Martyr of the British Isles (and hence the name of the town of Merthyr Dyfan just south of Cardiff in Wales).

545: Saint Dyfrig, Primate and Archbishop of Caerleon resigned in favour of Saint David.

545-6: Saint David moved the Archdiocese from Caerleon to Menevia (St. Davids). Death of Saint Dyfrig. He was succeeded as Bishop of Glywysing and Gwent by Saint Teilo.

547-48c Saint David, Archbishop of Menevia, Primate of the Church in the British Isles, did obeisance to the Patriarch of Jerusalem (as did his successors Saint Padarn, and Saint Teilo. Saint David reposed in 601.

The Church in the British Isles at this time numbered 120 bishops, hundreds of monasteries and parishes. It is well organised under a Primate with his See at Menevia, having been in existence since AD 37 – 561 years.

690c: The Witenagamot – the Parliament of England – forbade appeals from the Local Church to the Patriarch of Rome, emphasising the sufficiency of the Local Church and its Primate.

747: The Witenagamot again forbade appeals to the Roman Patriarch. In both cases, ecclesiastical appeals could go only as far as the Archbishop of Canterbury as Primate of the Local Church.

754-56: The forged “Donation of Constantine” purported to grant the pope of Rome supreme power over the other Patriarchates and to make him the supreme ruler of the universal Church.

804: Alcuin wrote to the people of Lyons cautioning them not to insert the filioque into the creed.

879: In November, a council sometimes referred to as the Eighth Ecumenical Council met in Constantinople. The council reaffirmed the creed of A.D. 381 and declared any and all additions to the creed invalid. Three hundred and eighty-three bishops attended. Pope John VIII accepted the council’s teaching that no one should add to the creed and in a letter to Patriatrch Photios indicated that he believed the filioque to be false. The filioque was not used in Rome until 1014.

980-985: The Western Rite Benedictine Monastery of Amalfion was founded on Mount Athos by the first Abbot Leo. Abbot Leo and his monks initially dwelt at the Great Lavra of Saint Athanasius while Amalfion was being built. The two monasteries remained closely linked. The monastery and its abbot were among the five senior (oldest established) – recorded on many still extant documents. It flourished under imperial favour until 1287.

The British Church claimed its Divine Liturgy as originating from Ephesus at the time of Saint John’s residence there. Possibly its origin was the skeletal liturgy in the Didache. Accordingly they referred to it as “the Liturgy of Saint John” (the Divine). Belonging to the Gallican family of Liturgies, it developed alone in the British Isles for four centuries. After that it began noticeable cross borrowing from other liturgies including as far away as Rome. The Liturgy is best preserved in a book which began its life around AD 600 and ceased having additions and alterations made to it about 950. This Liturgy continued in use in parts of the British Isles until 1171 when the schismatic papal bishops introduced into the British Church in 1066 had it suppressed but continued in the British refugee colony of New England under Constantinople around the Kerch Strait until circa 1600. It was partly (along with the Use of Rouen) the basis for the Sarum Use which was used from circa 1220 until after the Henrician split between the English church and the Roman church. Sarum was the very first official Liturgy of the new Church of England. It was used thereafter in England by some of the remnant Roman Catholics until the late nineteenth century, when the 1570 Tridentine rite was enforced. It continued in use in a few Anglican monasteries until the mid twentieth century. It is presently used by some ROCOR western rite parishes. Its predecessor the Liturgy of Saint John the Divine is used in two monasteries in the Russian Orthodox Diocese of Belgium and the ROCOR Hermitage in Scotland.

1716-1725: A considerable correspondence was conducted between the English Nonjuring bishops (usually styled in contemporary Orthodox documents as the “Catholic remnant” of the British Church), Peter the Great, Czar of Russia, and the Œcumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. It was proposed that a parish be established in London, which would be Orthodox and Western Rite. The Nonjurers’ lack of funds prevented their sending the proposed two delegates to Russia to seal the agreement. However, the Patriarch’s second letter to the “British Catholics” expressed a willingness to effect union and fix details later: “As for custom and ecclesiastical order and for the form and discipline of administering the sacraments, they will be easily settled when once a union is effected.”

1840s: The Reverend William Palmer, an eminent Anglican churchman, academic and member of the Oxford Movement, for ten years pursued an intense correspondence with Alexei Stepanovich Khomiakov, the great Russian religious thinker and Metropolitan (Saint) Philaret of Moscow towards the establishment of a Western Rite Orthodox Church in England

1860s Dr. J.J. Overbeck held lengthy conversations with ROC authorities regarding the blessing of the Western Rite for use within Orthodoxy.

1868: The Primus of Scotland visited Russia, where he held informal discussions with Metropolitan Filaret of Moscow and other Russian Church leaders about their interest in effecting the admittance of the British Church into Orthodoxy. He reported his meetings in detail to the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Convocation of Canterbury.

1869: In September of this year, the Holy Synod of Russia authorised the use of the corrected text of the Western Rite Liturgy and Benedictine offices for use in England. This was the text of the pre-Tridentine Roman Liturgy.

1898: The Western Rite Diocese of Moravia and Silesia was organised in Czechoslovakia under the Holy Synod of Russia.

1904: Archbishop Saint Tikhon (Belavin) and Bishop Saint Raphael (Hawaweeny) assisted by Fr. Saint John (Kochuroff) petitioned the Holy Synod of Russia to permit the adaption of the services taken from from the Book of Common Prayer, for use by Orthodox people.

1907: The Commission of the Holy Synod of Russia reported in favour of adaption of the services taken from the Book of Common Prayer and set out the criteria for adaption. The Holy Synod adopted the report.

1921: Archbishop Tikhon (Belavin) was elected Patriarch of Moscow (+1925).

Patriarch Dimitri of Serbia consecrated Fr Gorazd (Pavlik) bishop of the Western Rite Diocese of Moravia and Silesia. Bishop Gorazd was martyred by the Germans September 4th 1941.

1926: On the 8th of August, the Polish Catholic National Church – Bishop Alexis of Grodno – was received, as a Western Rite Diocese of Poland under the Moscow Patriarchate. This group was largely destroyed by the Germans during World War II with at least one parish remaining into the 21st century.

1929: The Russian Fraternity of Saint Irenee in France (headed by Vladimir Lossky and Evgraf Kovalevsky) acting under metropolitical guidance, celebrated the Western Rite in a Parish church in Paris for the first time.

1936: Under the terms of a Moscow Ukase, the Western Orthodox Church in France, was set up, headed by Fr. Eugraph (Kovalevsky). A group of Old Roman Catholics led by Louis Charles Winnaert formed the original core membership of this Western Rite national Church.

1944: Fr. Denis (Chambault) professed as a Benedictine within the Moscow Patriarchate in Paris. He founded the Saint-Denis & Saint-Seraphim de Sarov Priory in rue d’Alleray.

Fr. Eugraph (Kovalevsky) completed a restoration of the ancient first millennium Gallican Liturgy – the Liturgy of Saint Germanus.

1947 Fr. Gregorio Baccolini, a Benedictine monk was received in France. He set up a small Orthodox Benedictine house in Rome.

1953: Bishop Alexander (Turner) and three parishes received as Western Rite by Metropolitan Anthony (Bashir) of the Antiochian Archdiocese with Alexander Turner becoming an Archpriest..

1958: Archbishop (Saint) John (Maximovitch) of Paris took over direction of the Western Orthodox Church in France, (l’Eglise Catolique et Orthodoxe de France – ECOF) setting up a Western Rite seminary and Ordaining clergy. He authorised the use of the Liturgy of Saint Germanus.

1958: The Patriarchate of Antioch adopted the provisions of the Russian Holy Synods of 1869 and 1907 and instructed the American Archdiocese to follow them.

1960: The ROCOR year book published the the text of the Western Rite as auithorised by the Holy Synod of Russia in 1869. Archbishop Saint John (Maximovitch) celebrated the Western Rite at St Irenee Cathedral of the Orthodox Church of France in Paris.

1961: The Western Rite Vicariate was created within the Antiochian Metropolitanate of North America. Fr. Alexander Turner became the first Dean of the Vicariate.

1962: In the United States, the Moscow Patriarchate Bishop Dositheus received the Monastery of Our Lady of Mount Royal and blessed it to the Western Rite.

1965: Archbishop (Saint) John (Maximovitch) Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia, having been translated to San Francisco, consecrated Fr. Eugraph Kovalevsky as Bishop Jean-Nectaire, of the Diocese of Saint-Denys for the Orthodox Church of France (ECOF).

1972: Moscow Patriarchate Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh and Archbishop Alexis celebrated the Western Rite Liturgy in a parish in Italy.

1975: In the United States, the ROCOR Archbishop Nikon received the Monastery of Our Lady of Mount Royal and blessed it to the Western Rite.

Saint Michael’s Anglican Parish, Whittier California was received into Orthodoxy (AWRV) as Western Rite – the first Anglican parish to be so received.

1993: Bishop Hilarion (Kapral) of Manhattan ROCOR authorised the establishment of the Christ the Saviour Monastery in Providence Rhode Island and blessed it to the Western Rite.

1994 Saint Petroc Monastery was placed under the personal direction of His Holiness, Patriarch Ignatius IV of Antioch.

1997: Archbishop Hilarion (Kapral) blessed Saint Petroc Monastery to the Western Rite and directed it to act in a missionary role, setting up Monastery missions using the Western Rite.

2001: With the blessing of Archbishop Hilarion, the Superior of Saint Petroc Monastery visited l’Eglise Catolique et Orthodoxe de France (ECOF)

The Saint Dunstan Psalter produced by the Lancelot Andrewes Press became available for use as a Western Rite Orthodox Psalter.

2002: The Saint Ambrose Hymnal produced by the AWRV was authorised for use.

The completed Saint Colman Prayer Book submitted to Archbishop Hilarion.

Archbishop Simon (Ichounine) Russian Orthodox Archbishop of Belgium, authorised the Western Liturgy of Saint John the Divine (Stowe Missal) to be used in the vernacular in the ROC monastery at Pervijze.

2003: After two years of guidance by Saint Petroc Monastery, and others, the Anglican bishop Robert Waggener converted to Orthodoxy, was  received by Bishop Basil (Essey). He was assigned to run a Western Rite parish of people who converted with him.

2007: The centenary of the decision of the Holy Synod of Russia to permit the adaption of the English services for use by Orthodox people was celebrated at St. Mary’s, Capel-le-Ferne and as an hierarchical Solemn High Mass at St. Mary’s, Waverley, using the Divine Liturgy of the English Rite.

2013 The Benedictine Monastery of Our Lady and Saint Laurence was founded in the Rocky Mountains.

Archbishop Anyhony (Bondi) in the US along with 17 of his clergy joined the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia Western Rite, and brought in approximately 70 other clergy to the Western Rite Church.

The Western Rite has flourished within Orthodoxy for 963 years of the first millennium, 600 years of the second millennium and the whole of the third millennium of Christianity – a total of 1,583 years within the Orthodox Church. In other words, for 75% of its existence, the Orthodox Church has contained the Western Rite within it. Being without the Orthodox Western Rite is an abnormal state for the Orthodox Church.

The Vicariate of Saint Paulinus was created under Charity Law at the beginning of 2023, and blessed by the Orthodox Church of France (L'ECOF) to continue Western Rite Orthodoxy in England and Wales. The orthodox parish of Saint Anthony was established in York with their first western rite priest.

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